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Two Complaints Cause the Michigan State Bar to Eliminate Short Story Contest
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Michigan Bar

Summary: After receiving two complaints about the fifth place essay of the Michigan Bar biennial contest, the Bar removed the essay and discontinued the contest.

A short story was submitted to the State Bar of Michigan for their biennial contest. The Publication and Website Advisory Committee reviewed it and 29 other anonymous essays. The authors of the stories are withheld from the Committee. The contest had been going for eight years.


The fifth place story “Post-Conviction Relief” received two complaints, causing the Bar to reexamine it and then remove it because they believed it to be laced with “racist cues and symbolism.” The story was about the “soft-spoken and introverted Michigan attorney” Jack Schoenherr. His daughter is murdered by “eighteen-year-old, tattoo-covered, drug abusing gangbanger named Tyrone Washington.”

Schoenherr’s daughter is killed in “cold blood with a stolen revolver for no reason other than that [Washington] wanted to show off his ‘polar bear hunting skills’ to prospective candidates eager to join his gang.” Washington displays no remorse and even jokes around while Schoenherr gives a victim-impact statement.

Once Washington is put into prison, Schoenherr visits him while pretending to be his appeals attorney. He lectures Washington about retributive justice and then kills him with a sharpened pen.

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The race of all characters is not given during the story but the stereotypes run strong. The author of the story also turns out to be the author of the book “White Apocalypse.” Author Kyle Bristow is a Clinton Township attorney that runs a law firm that deals with criminal and juvenile defense, family law, criminal record expungement, appeals, and civil litigation. Bristow was once the head of the Young Americans for Freedom at Michigan State University.

Since the Bar took down the short story, Bristow has posted it to the Occidental Observer, a site that gives “original content touching on the themes of white identity, white interests, and the culture of the West.”




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